FIVE DECADES OF KNOWLEDGE
Terrain Tamer celebrates its half-century
When Terrain Tamer started in 1969, it did so with the simple idea of supplying parts to local Bedford operators.
It was customers like tour operator Bill King however, who took tourists through rough, uncharted terrain in the Australian outback to destinations such as Uluru, who would help to provide the groundwork for what the Terrain Tamer brand has grown to be today.
With the conditions that Bill would travel through came breakages and parts failure, and in the isolated and unforgiving outback where a poor-quality part can literally be the difference between life and death, a need for something stronger and more reliable arose.
Terrain Tamer was born out of founder Frank Hutchinson’s determination to find a solution for problems like Bill’s, and eventually Bill’s tours were so successful, and his vehicles so reliable using Terrain Tamer parts, that he went on to found Australian Adventure Tours which today is known as AAT Kings.
For five decades, Terrain Tamer has learnt from these pioneers – sometimes the hard way – that while every vehicle has its strengths; they also all have weaknesses that can stop them in their tracks without a care for location.
As the 4WD community has grown over the years, the problems Bill had all those years ago have become the problems of mine operators, cattle station owners and recreational drivers around the world, constantly presenting Terrain Tamer with new challenges to solve.
Instead of on-selling parts from suppliers, the company says it puts its name behind those they have designed and created themselves, seeing them responsible for the quality, and ultimately, the customer’s safety.
Over time, the rigorous research, development and testing that every part goes through before it can bear the Terrain Tamer stamp has ensured that the name is synonymous with quality and innovation, with every part at least equal to original equipment.
Modifying and improving parts for 4WDs has become Terrain Tamer’s strength however, and many of them can now proudly be labelled as being stronger than original equipment, providing practical solutions to the common problems that customers would report.
The Terrain Tamer modified fifth gear set for instance, combats an issue with the popular 70 Series V8 Landcruiser models which would rev far too hard when driven at 100km/hr in fifth gear, causing loud engine noise, excessive fluid temperatures and poor fuel consumption, contributing to a shortened engine life. By modifying the gears, Terrain Tamer were able to reduce the revs by 20 percent, improving engine stability and effectively addressing these problems.
Further, Terrain Tamer says its Fortified Clutch has been designed to feel as soft as an original clutch, while lasting twice as long and providing 80 percent increased torque capacity when towing a heavy load like a boat or a caravan, or for use in the military where the strength of parts can be essential for survival.
Terrain Tamer explains that a visit to one of their mining customers saw that conditions were so trying, that if they didn’t change brake pads every five days, they’d have to change both of the pads and the rotors every seven days. Since Original Equipment componentry isn’t built for this kind of environment, Terrain Tamer’s Heavy-Duty Break Pads and High-Performance Disc Rotor range was born out of a need for improved parts that could survive what the mines put them through.
Today, Terrain Tamer boasts a full product range of more than 40,000 unique part numbers, essentially formed by parts that will keep a vehicle running – right through the gearbox, transfer case, CV joints, filters, suspension, bearing kits, brake, clutch and thousands of other parts that make up any vehicle.
What began with Bedfords and Leylands all those years ago, has continued through LandCruisers and Patrols to the quickly spreading market of 4WD utes such as the Ranger and Hilux, that are themselves on their own pioneering journey.
Today, the business remains independent and family owned, and while Terrain Tamers roots are grounded in how to strengthen a vehicle to ensure safe passage through our dangerous yet beautiful landscape, they have carved out a unique international niche among the industry’s major corporations, exporting into more than 80 countries worldwide.
On the surface, the Terrain Tamer story is simply one of a spare parts business that has grown to see international success. But at its heart, it is one of a company who have not only survived but thrived for half a century, thanks to a consistent, ongoing culture of listening, problem solving and hard work, coupled with the innate understanding of the Australian Outback, that has driven decades of innovation.
Most recently, Terrain Tamer displayed 50 years of spare parts knowledge and expertise at the 2019 Australian Auto Aftermarket Expo, via a range of new and innovative products, introducing their parabolic leaf springs and Heavy Duty Bearing Kits.
Terrain Tamer says the words “When Quality Counts” are emblazoned across its logo because the company has learned that, through 50 years of lessons, knowledge, supply relationships and tooling, that in this business, it most certainly does.
For more information from Terrain Tamer, visit www.terraintamer.com.au